Luisa Ortega, once Marxist Nicolas Maduro’s Prosecutor General, was lucky to get out alive. When she protested the country’s Supreme Court’s assumption of powers reserved to the duly-elected National Assembly last summer, that court froze all of her personal assets and barred her from leaving the country. Her replacement, Tarek William Saab, learned she was attempting to flee the country and almost succeeded in stopping her. She and her husband fled from Venezuela by speedboat to Aruba and from there they flew into Columbia.
From there she has been waging a war of exposure of Maduro’s criminal activities and the Wall Street Journal just reviewed her 495-page report of his atrocities. The latest step down into depravity consists of using his police forces to attack, capture, torture, maim, and then murder innocents who once believed they were protected from such by the rule of law. But that rule no longer exists in Venezuela, according to one of the officers involved in the butchery: “We can’t wait for an arrest warrant.” So en masse Maduro’s forces enter the lower-class barrios at 4 a.m. while the innocent targets are still sleeping, abduct them under cover of night in military vehicles to a nearby army base, and then systematically torture them before murdering them.
From the Journal:
The young men had already been tortured at an army base when soldiers piled them into two jeeps and transported them to a wooded area just outside the Venezuelan capital.
Stumbling in the dark, with T-shirts pulled over their faces and hands tied behind their backs, they were steered to an open pit. Soldiers then used machetes to deliver blow after blow to the base of their necks. Most suffered gaping wounds that killed them before they hit the ground.
Others, bleeding profusely but still alive, crumpled into the shallow grave as their killers piled dirt over their bodies to hide the crime.
“We think they were alive a good while as they died from asphyxia,” said Zair Mundaray, a veteran prosecutor who led the exhumation and investigation that pieced together how the killings unfolded. “It had to be a terrible thing.”
It is a terrible thing when a government commits mass murder against its own citizens. But it is not an expected thing — not when a government is no longer restrained by the rule of law. As George Washington reputedly said regarding the nature of government, “Government is not reason. It is not eloquence. It is force. Like fire it is both a dangerous servant and a fearful master.”
The New American and others have painstakingly covered the descent of Venezuela from a prosperous and viable country into a back-water third-world slum now under the control of a madman. None has done it any better than Daniel Mitchell, a Cato scholar who has been watching the descent and recording his findings. Some of his findings are paraphrased below:
- On May 30, the New York Timesreported that following huge protests, Maduro’s forces killed 50 people, injured 1,000 more and had 2,700 arrested. Many of those arrested who are still living remain in jails reminiscent of the Gulag.
- On June 5, Fox News reported on Venezuelan women, many of them professionals, being driven to prostitution in order to feed themselves and their families.
- On June 6 Fox News further reported that needed medicines coming into Venezuela from humanitarian aid groups outside the country were being confiscated by Maduro’s people and then used to reward them for their loyalty to his regime.
- On June 28 the New York Timesreported that over a trillion dollars’ worth of economic wealth had been squandered by the country’s socialist regimes over the past 15 years, pushing some 80 percent of the country’s people into abysmal poverty.
- On July 30 the Wall Street Journalreported that increasing numbers of Maduro’s people are deserting his paradise, escaping into nearby Colombia. In a single day more than 26,000 Venezuelan’s were able to escape Maduro’s paradise by crossing the border into Colombia.
- On August 2 the Associated Press reported on the grievous mistreatment of one its female journalists in Caracas on assignment. She thought she was protected by her status as a foreign reported. She was wrong.
- On August 7 CNN reported the increasing likelihood that Maduro was going to default on numerous principal and interest payments on his enormous national debt.
- On August 13 the Times of Israelreported that Maduro’s targets included Jews as well as his own hapless and defenseless citizens. In 1999 there were about 25,000 Jews living in Venezuela. Today that number is less than 10,000 and rapidly declining as those remaining are escaping as fast as they can.
- On September 15 Caracas Chroniclesreported on the systematic torture being meted out, long before the unhappy report of same arrived at the offices of the Wall Street Journalthis week. The details of those tortures are deliberately being omitted here.
- On September 26 Aljazeera reported that infant mortality has risen to almost 35 percent — that’s one out of every three live births dying shortly afterwards — and maternal mortality — those are their mothers — rising to 65 percent — that’s two out of every three mothers giving birth.
- On October 11, the Daily Mailreported on a Venezuelan mother eating the remains of a cat while sitting beside a road, with pictures, for those who can stomach them.
- On November 4 the Daily Beastreported on zoo animals being killed and eaten by starving citizens in Maduro’s mad socialist paradise.
- On December 19 the New York Timesdefiantly oblivious to the obvious, reported on the unfolding economic catastrophe in Venezuela while calling it a result of “economic mismanagement” rather than telling the truth about its real cause: unbridled socialism taken to its logical extreme.
Socialism is a scam sold to the unsuspecting and the ignorant as “power to the people.” In Maduro’s Venezuelan socialist experiment it is being revealed for what it really is: unlimited government being inflicted upon the people.
Photo: AP Images
An Ivy League graduate and former investment advisor, Bob is a regular contributor to The New American magazine and blogs frequently at LightFromTheRight.com, primarily on economics and politics. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.